Tag Archives: Casablanca

BBC, Movies and Me

22 Jul

There are a ton of lists about the greatest things that ever were. Books. TV shows. Cars. It goes on and on. Recently, BBC added to the list of lists by announcing the 100 greatest American movies of all time. According to the article, film critics from around the world provided their opinions.BBC

To create this post, I decided to list the movies I have seen and include my favorite line from each one.

97. Gone With the Wind – Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn96. The Dark Knight

91. ET: The Extraterrestrial – I just hope we don’t wake up on Mars or something surrounded by millions of little squashy guys.

90. Apocalypse Now – Charlie don’t surf!

84. Deliverance – Sometimes you have to lose yourself ‘fore you can find anything.

82. Raiders of the Lost Ark – Bad dates.

78. Schindler’s List – There will be generations because of what you did.

76. The Empire Strikes Back – Never tell me the odds.

75. Close Encounters of the Third Kind – Einstein was probably one of them.

74. Forrest Gump – Anyway, like I was sayin’, shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. Dey’s uh, shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep-fried, stir-fried. There’s pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich. That- that’s about it.

73. Network – I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore.

66. Red River – Well, I don’t like to see things goin’ good or bad. I like ’em in between.

65. The Right Stuff – Hey, Ridley, ya got any Beeman’s?

61. Eyes Wide Shut – Life goes on. It always does, until it doesn’t.

56. Back to the Future – I guess you guys aren’t ready for that yet. But your kids are gonna love it.

55. The Graduate – Plastics.

52. The Wild Bunch – We all dream of being a child again, even the worst of us. Perhaps the worst most of all.

46. It’s a Wonderful Life – Ah, youth is wasted on the wrong people.

45. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance – Nothing’s too good for the man who shot Liberty Valance.

42. Dr. Strangelove – Gentlemen, you can’t fight in here! This is the War Room.

41. Rio Bravo – If I ever saw a man holdin’ a bull by the tail, you’re it.

38. Jaws – Well it proves one thing, Mr. Hooper. It proves that you wealthy college boys don’t have the education enough to admit when you’re wrong.

36. Star Wars – Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid.

34. The Wizard of Oz – That’s a horse of a different color!

28. Pulp Fiction – There’s a passage I got memorized. Ezekiel 25:17. “The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of the darkness, for he is truly his brother’s keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy My brothers. And you will know I am the Lord when I lay My vengeance upon you.”

21. Mulholland Drive – I got the pool, she got the pool-man.

20. Goodfellas – Jimmy was the kind of guy that rooted for bad guys in the movies.

16. McCabe and Mrs. Miller – I got poetry in me!

14. Nashville – Who do you think is running Congress? Farmers? Engineers? Teachers? Businessmen? No, my friends. Congress is run by lawyers. A lawyer is trained for two things and two things only. To clarify – that’s one. And to confuse – that’s the other.

13. North by Northwest – In the world of advertising, there’s no such thing as a lie. There’s only expedient exaggeration.

10. The Godfather Part II – If anything in this life is certain, if history has taught us anything, it is that you can kill anyone.

9. Casablanca – Everybody comes to Rick’s.

5. The Searchers – That’ll be the day.

4. 2001: A Space Odyssey – It can only be attributable to human error.

2. The Godfather – Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.

1. Citizen Kane – Those are the only terms anybody ever knows – his own.

That makes 35 out of 100. Looks like I need to watch a few more.

Movie Wisdom – John Qualen Edition

29 May

I like watching old movies, and, as a watcher of old movies, I see the same actors show up time after time. These are not the ones who are famous and play in the leading roles. These are the ones who play in the supporting roles. They have familiar faces, but they do not have familiar names.

John Qualen was one of those actors. He was in tons of movies and television shows. In almost all of them, he had a Scandinavian accent. That is pretty good for someone who grew up in Illinois. In honor of John Qualen and other character actors, I have decided to continue the “Movie Wisdom” series with his movies.John Qualen

In the past, I have searched for nuggets of wisdom from the movies of different actors. There have been many, but the search for wisdom in the films of Burt Reynolds and Don Knotts are the most popular. I have also covered Kevin Costner, Steve McQueen, Ellen Barkin, Don Johnson, Paul Newman, Jodie Foster, Tommy Lee Jones, Sheb Wooley, Lee Marvin, and George Peppard.

The rules are always the same. I must have seen the movie, but it does not matter which character spoke the line.

From The Grapes of Wrath

I wouldn’t pray just for a old man that’s dead, ’cause he’s all right. If I was to pray, I’d pray for folks that’s alive and don’t know which way to turn.

Seems like the government’s got more interest in a dead man than a live one.

Takes no nerve to do something, ain’t nothin’ else you can do.

Maybe there ain’t no sin and there ain’t no virtue, they’s just what people does.

From Knute Rockne All American

Anyone who follows the truth in his heart never makes a mistake.

From The Devil and Daniel Webster

A man can always change things. That’s what makes him different from the barnyard critters.

From Casablanca

I never make plans that far ahead.

If we stop breathing, we’ll die.

Well there are certain sections of New York, Major, that I wouldn’t advise you to try to invade.

From The Searchers

Figure a man’s only good for one oath at a time.

I don’t believe in surrenders.

From North to Alaska

A bullet through the head is always the best cure for love.

From Two Rode Together

Well, there are some men you just can’t trust to stay where you put ’em.

You know, sometimes it takes a lot more courage to live than it does to die.

I can tell when a man walks through that door whether he prefers blondes or brunettes, drinks whiskey or beer, plays blackjack or poker, is a cheapskate or a high roller.

From The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance

When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.

Courage can be purchased at yon’ tavern!

From Cheyenne Autumn

Does it ever matter who fires the first shot?

Now, as I understand it, a mademoiselle is a madam who ain’t quite made it yet – only younger and friskier.

From A Big Hand for the Little Lady

There’s a whole world waitin’ for you out there.

That’s a bargain all right, but a bargain ain’t a bargain unless it’s something you need.

Now look, mister, the first rule of the game of poker, whether you’re playing eastern or western rules, or the kind they play at the North Pole, is put up or shut up!

 

The Fab(ricated) Four

25 Feb

This weekend, my wife and I went to the Nashville Symphony with her dad. We do this quite often, as it is always a great performance in a great venue. However, this performance was a little different. The Classical Mystery Tour is a band that impersonates The Beatles with the backing of an orchestra.Classical Mystery Tour

I had read great reviews about the show but was not prepared for how cool it was. Impersonators can be hit or miss, and these guys definitely hit. They had the voices. They had the mannerisms. “Paul” played a left-handed guitar when he was actually right-handed. They also had the clothes. The band started with the mid 1960s suit look and changed into the Sgt. Pepper look. Then, they went to a 1970s style with “John” wearing his famous white suit.

I liked the entire show, but a few moments stood out. Hearing “Live and Let Die” with an orchestra was awesome. I know it is not a Beatles song and saying it was my favorite could be considered sacrilege, but it was awesome. I also liked “Imagine”, another solo effort. When it comes to actual songs by The Beatles, their rendition of “The Long and Winding Road” was great.

It was during “The Long and Winding Road” that my mind starting going to places other than the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. It went to a young man lying in the dark with his headphones on. That was me, and that is what I used to do every night before going to sleep. I cannot count the number of nights that I woke up with music still playing in my ears.

“The Long and Winding Road” was exactly the type song I would listen to. It is slow, melodic and, in my mind, kind of sad. Of course, I like all kinds of songs and have a fondness for heavy metal, but the slow and sad ones have always held an attraction for me.

As I listened in the dark, I would imagine myself being the sad one in the song. I would bring up any heartbreak or hurt that I had experienced and used it to bring up a melancholy mood. It may have been fatalistic and was definitely emotional martyrdom. However, that was me. I was always bad about imagining myself as the one in the movie who gave up the girl for a later cause. I guess that would make me Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca.

In the dark, I would listen to these sad songs and play movies in my mind. In those movies, I was always the one who watched others walk away or was the one who was doing the walking away. I guess that is why I ended up having a good time in therapy.

I do not do that anymore. I still listen to sad songs, and they still entertain me. However, I do not place myself inside of them. I listen to them as an outsider who is happy with where he has ended up in life. Placing myself in sad songs probably meant that I was not happy with where I was in life. Now, that is not the case. I am happy with where I am.

That is a song with a different verse. That is also where my mind went as “Paul” sat at the piano and sang “The Long and Winding Road” as the orchestral sounds filled the room.

Listeria – Going to the Picture Show

2 Jul

The folks at Entertainment Weekly just came out with a bunch of lists. The 100 greatest television shows. The 100 greatest novels. The 100 greatest albums. The 100 greatest lists of great things in popular culture. It is perfect fodder for “Listeria”, the ongoing examination of our fascination with lists.

This is an examination of the magazine’s list of the 100 greatest movies, or, as my dad used to call them, the picture show. When I was a kid, he would ask if I wanted to go to the picture show because he knew it drove me crazy. For those who don’t know, the picture show was a southern term for the movies. He said a lot of other things to drive me crazy, but that one was a sure thing.

Never fear, I am not going to write about 100 movies. I am going to list the ones that I have seen. To add some texture, I think I will include my favorite thing about each one.

Oh, there will also be a little trivia at the end.Ward Bond

1. Citizen Kane (1941) – The line, “A toast, Jedediah, to love on my terms. Those are the only terms anybody ever knows – his own.”

2. The GodFather (1972) – The line, “Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.”

3. Casablanca (1942) – Rick’s Cafe

6. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) – The floor that separates to form an indoor swimming pool

9. Nashville (1975) – The song, “It Don’t Worry Me”

10. Gone With the Wind (1939) – The coolness of Rhett Butler

12. The Searchers (1956) – Monument Valley

14. Bambi (1942) – Thumper

18. Jaws (1975) – Quint’s story about being on the USS Indianapolis

19. Pulp Fiction (1994) – The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother’s keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy My brothers. And you will know My name is the Lord when I lay My vengeance upon thee.

24. The Sound of Music (1965) – When it was over

25. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) – The music

28. The Wizard of Oz (1939) – The Red Brick Road (where does it go?)

29. North by Northwest (1959) – Mount Rushmore

33. The Graduate (1967) – Katharine Ross

41. The Road Warrior (1981) – The kid with the decapitating boomerang

43. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) – Gandalf

49. Goldfinger (1964) – The Kentucky Fried Chicken in one of the scenes

52. Titanic (1997) – The wreck

53. Star Wars – Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980) – Darth Vader

56. Schindler’s List (1993) – The last scene in the cemetery

59. All the President’s Men (1976) – Jason Robards

61. The Silence of the Lambs (1991) – Hannibal Lecter’s cell

62. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982) – The flying bicycle

63. Network (1976) – The line, “I’M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!”

68. GoodFellas (1990) – The music

69. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964) – Slim Pickens riding the bomb.

78. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) – The melting face of the Nazi

81. Blade Runner (1982) – Pris

83. The Wild Bunch (1969) – The Front Porch Massacre

85. Dirty Harry (1971) – The line, “I know what you’re thinking. “Did he fire six shots or only five?” Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I kind of lost track myself. But being as this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?”

88. The Dark Knight (2008)Batman riding away at the end

89. Woodstock (1970) – The crowd shots

93. A Face in the Crowd (1957) – All of it

94. Brokeback Mountain (2005) – Randy Quaid

99. There WIll Be Blood (2007) – The line, “Drainage! Drainage, Eli, you boy. Drained dry. I’m so sorry. Here, if you have a milkshake, and I have a milkshake, and I have a straw. There it is, that’s a straw, you see? You watching?. And my straw reaches acroooooooss the room, and starts to drink your milkshake… I… drink… your… milkshake!”

Trivia – Ward Bond (pictured above) was in at least 5 of the top 1oo movies. This includes 3 of the top 12.